- (Reuters/Tim Wimborne)
Simon Gittany was found guilty of murder in a case that captivated the public after it was learned that he threw his fiancée off the balcony of the Sydney, Australia apartment they shared.
The murder of ballerina Lisa Harnum occurred in July of 2011, but Gittany had pleaded not guilty in her death, insisting she climbed over the balcony and fell.
The guilty verdict was delivered by Supreme Court Justice Lucy McCallum, who was assertive and confident during the judgment that took more than four hours to complete, according to CBC.
"I'm confident to the point of actual persuasion that he maintained his rage, carried her over to the balcony, and then dropped her over," McCallum told the court.
She stated that she did not accept Gittany's account that Harnum climbed over the balcony of their 15th floor apartment and accidently fell due to the lack of evidence in support of such a claim.
The judge said the lack of fingerprints on the glass barrier made his version of events implausible.
McCallum also dismissed repeated accusations that Harnum was suicidal and had a propensity to harm herself, telling the court they were "completely unfounded."
Witnesses in the court room said the 40-year-old Gittany barely reacted as the guilty verdict was read, according to The Sydney Herald.
Harnum's mother, Joan, told reporters outside the courtroom after the verdict was read that "there are no winners in this case."
She wants the death of her daughter to be used to raise awareness about the dangers of abusive relationships.
"Two families have had their lives dramatically changed forever," she said. "We will always mourn the loss of our beautiful Lisa Cecelia and are working towards making her legacy a powerful wake up call to young women, parents and sibling of these young women to be aware of the warning signs of a controlling relationship."